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Listening: ‘Suncity’ by Khalid.

“Suncity” EP by Khalid.

Mid-performance at Austin City Limits, Khalid announced he was dropping an EP called “Suncity” Friday, October 19.

I bought it and downloaded it as soon as I woke up on Friday 🙂

It’s been such a long time since I found an artist where I buy and download every single thing they put out, as soon as they put it out. It’s refreshing.

Although I do wish this was a full album, the song list is:

  • 9.13
  • Vertigo
  • Saturday Nights
  • Salem’s Interlude
  • Motion
  • Better
  • Suncity (feat. Empress Of)

It’s only 21 minutes long, so listening to it on repeat is easy – and it plays nice. Whenever I get a new album, I like listening to the songs (and interludes) in order for awhile before hitting shuffle. I like to hear everything in the order it was intended first.

Just like with “American Teen”, every time I listen to it, I like different songs more or less. Currently, I am loving “Vertigo” and “Better”.

I’ve been better off than broken
I’ve been battered, I’ve been beat
I wish I was more outspoken
But the words are out of reach

– Vertigo

The entire EP is pretty chill – “Suncity” is the only track that’s upbeat, and many of the lyrics for the songs are more solemn (albeit that’s what Khalid has been known for thus far).

Per usual, I went on Twitter to see what other fans thought of the EP so far. I wasn’t surprised to see that people are loving it and calling out the love letter he wrote to his hometown of El Paso, Texas.

I’m going to keep on listening, and I’m happy to have a few more songs to add into my Khalid playlist!

Are any of you guys Khalid fans? I’d love to know if you’ve listened to “Suncity” yet and what your favorite songs are. Happy listening!

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Listening: ‘American Teen’ by Khalid.

LOVING this album!

In early June, I was flipping stations on Sirius XM, and came across a song called “Location” by Khalid. I immediately liked the beat, so I kept it on, and I was blown away. I wrote down the song title in my phone so I could look for it on iTunes later.

Well, later turned out to be on my flight back from Indiana, and I listed to this track on repeat for longer than I’d like to admit. I love it! Even after I bought the rest of the album, this track remains to be one of my favorites.

I don’t wanna fall in love off of subtweets so
Let’s get personal
I got a lot of cool spots that we can go
Tell me what’s the move and I got you
I’m only acting like this ’cause I like you

-“Location” by Khalid

I quickly purchased another track (“Keep Me”), and after listening to it for hours, I bought the rest of the “American Teen” album, which serves as Khalid’s debut. And yes, he’s a teenager (19), singing words that are well beyond his years.

I’m a little late to the game here – the album was released at the beginning of March this year, and it’s getting rave reviews (rightfully so). I haven’t felt this way about an album in awhile – and by “this way”, I mean, I listen to it constantly.

I like listening to albums the way they were intended: in the order of the tracks on the album, before I start mixing things up. And this one, I listen to in my office, my car, I listen in my kitchen when I’m cooking dinner, and I listened all through the Dallas airport. It’s incredible.

Some of my favorite tracks, aside from “Location” are “Shot Down”, “Keep Me”, “American Teen”, and “Another Sad Love Song”.

I must be honest, I have a lot of pride
But I’m broken inside
I guess this sounds like another sad love song
I can’t get over how it all went wrong
But, I let the words come together
Then, maybe I’ll feel better

-“Another Sad Love Song” by Khalid

MTV named Khalid their Artist to Watch for the month of July, and they’ve been playing video clips of him, including an acoustic performance of a popular track, “Young Dumb & Broke” (watch it here). And here’s some of what the New York Times had to say about the album:

That’s an almost universal teen conundrum, something Khalid acknowledges throughout this song with constant use of “we” and “our” (“We don’t always say what we mean,” “This is our year”). He’s sketching a generational mood, and drives the point home when at the end of the song, the digital shimmer falls away and, backed by only an acoustic guitar, a group of young men — high school friends from back in El Paso — bark-sing Khalid’s chorus. It’s a campfire singalong, a signifier of tactile humanity for a singer who knows how technology both redeems and corrupts.

“American Teen” is a promising amalgam of bedroom art-soul and 1980s new-wave pop maximalism, and a union of lonely-boy mirror gazing with a sense of larger cultural purpose. It most vividly recalls the promise embedded in the soundtracks of John Hughes films — that an outsider’s story might in fact be the thing that can unify and move millions.

Some of the songs have an upbeat undertone to them, but overall it’s a pretty chill album. I hope you guys will check it out – if not, I’d love to know what you’re listening to right now!